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Carmen Inside Out
January 29, 2020 @ 3:30 pmFree
Soprano Kirstin Chávez and pianist Qiao Zheng Goh present Carmen Inside Out.
Kirstin Chávez began her professional operatic career in 1999 after having completed a Bachelor of Music degree at New Mexico State University, a Master of Music degree and Performer’s Certificate at the Eastman School of Music, and two years of young artist programs with the Brevard Music Center, the Orlando Opera, and the Santa Fe Opera. Since 1999, Kirstin has performed numerous opera roles and countless concerts in countries throughout the world, including Canada, Mexico, the USA, France, Germany, England, Wales, Spain, Italy, Sweden, Japan, China, Taiwan, Malaysia, and Australia. Although Kirstin is well known for her interpretations of many modern roles in contemporary operas and also for her delivery of various well-known pants roles such as Orfeo from Gluck’s opera Orfeo ed Eurydice and Octavian from Der Rosenkavalier by Richard Strauss, she is best known the world over as a premier interpreter of the role of Carmen from Georges Bizet’s opera Carmen. Over a 20-year period Kirstin has prepared and perfected this challenging operatic role, which, in addition to demanding that she achieve the highest levels of vocal and dramatic performance, has also necessitated her becoming fluent in the French language, proficient at playing the castanets, and dancing in the flamenco style. Now, Kirstin is accepted as one of the foremost expert in this role, having performed it around the world in upwards of 35 different productions and hundreds of performances. During her years of preparation and performance, Kirstin has had the opportunity to work with other celebrated experts including: well-known flamenco dancers who have either choreographed Carmen productions or taught Kirstin privately; world-class conductors and stage directors with expertise in the French Romantic operatic style; and numerous French coaches known for their mastery of French diction and the French singing style. After two decades of working to master this iconic character with the help of some of the foremost experts in the business, Kirstin is sought after, not only to continue to bring her Carmen to productions around the world, but also to teach her Carmen to a new generation of opera singers.
Qiao “Ciao” Zheng Goh is an active collaborative pianist and opera répétiteur performing in the United States, France, Italy, Germany, and Malaysia. Collaborating with North Carolina Opera chorus since 201718 season, Qiao has worked on their productions of Bellini’s Norma, Bizet’s Carmen, Puccini’s Tosca, Leoncavallo’s Pagliacci, and the upcoming Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte. She was répétiteur for Carolina Performing Arts’ production of Laura Kaminsky’s chamber opera As One, as well as the pianist for their premier gala of Jeniffer Higdon’s Cold Mountain, performing selections from the opera with the star vocalists. Qiao is Music Director for UNC Opera at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill. Their Spring 2019 production of Kurt Weill’s The One Who Says Yes (Der Jasager) was awarded first prize by the National Opera Association for the 2018 19 Opera Production Competition (Opera Division II). She also collaborates with Carolina Choir at the university where she premiered Kenneth Frazelle’s Songs of War (text by Paul Green). As a vocal coach at UNC, her students have been accepted at major universities and music festivals, and have won awards from the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS). Qiao continues to further her professional development by playing masterclasses with world renowned musicians such as Martin Katz, Barbara Bonney, Lucas Meachem, Sherill Milnes, as well as attending summer programs where she studied with coaches such as Michael Strauss and Ellen Rissinger. Qiao is fluent in English, Mandarin, Cantonese, Malay, and Hakka dialect; she is currently working on conversational ability in German, Italian, and French. Qiao has been Staff Accompanist for various summer programs over the past few years, including Opera Viva! (Verona, Italy), International Performing Arts Institute (Kiefersfelden, Germany), as well as North Carolina Summer Opera (Raleigh) where she was the Music Director for Puccini’s Turandot production.
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